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A Fool And Forty Acres: Conjuring A Vineyard Three Thousand Miles From Burgundy [Paperback]

Geoff Heinricks
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 21.99
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Book Description

July 26 2005
foreword by Jamie Kennedy

A Fool and Forty Acres is Heinricks’ beautifully written account of leaving behind the rat race, slowing life down, and establishing an intimate relationship with one small parcel of land in a magical corner of Canada.

You won’t find Prince Edward County on any map of the world’s great wine regions. Yet it is to this dollop of rolling limestone in eastern Lake Ontario that Geoff Heinricks brought his young family in pursuit of a dream of creating a truly world class wine. The County, as the locals call it, is a long way from the Niagara Peninsula, and three thousand miles from Burgundy, yet Heinricks and a few hardy souls like him claim that their wines will one day rival those of the legendary French province.

A self-described 21st-century peasant, Heinricks follows the seasons in his vineyards with exquisite attention, from digging the earth, to grafting and planting the vines, to trellising and pruning, to tending the young grapes, to harvesting the fruits of his labours. Along the way, he sketches the human history of the area, the native peoples whose tools and clay shards are heaved up by the soil, and the United Empire Loyalists, whose tidy barns and farmhouses still dot the landscape today.

He also presents a cast of his colourful County neighbours: from old-school farmers to refugees like him from the city, convinced in the wisdom of producing and consuming locally the very best food and wine in harmony with the land.


From the Hardcover edition.

Frequently Bought Together

A Fool And Forty Acres: Conjuring A Vineyard Three Thousand Miles From Burgundy + The Complete Idiot's Guide to Starting and Running a Winery + From Vines to Wines: The Complete Guide to Growing Grapes and Making Your Own Wine
Price For All Three: CDN$ 47.29

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Review

“An outstanding memoir.… Topping this book would be a difficult act.… How an intellectual threw his shoulder behind the plough and created a credible vineyard in the place of scrub brush is a lively and exciting tale.… Pain, loss and humiliation are strong themes in A Fool and Forty Acres, yet it is a terrifically engaging success story.– It’s the author’s knack for storytelling and his unbridled love of the challenge that make this a wonderful contribution to the growing literature of life on the land.”
–Marianne Ackerman, The Gazette (Montreal)

“This delightful book is not only a viticultural primer, but a personal memoir, local history and geographic study of a fascinating microclimate. Most of all, it’s a celebration of wine in all its myriad splendour.… The book is as informative as it is entertaining. A reader learns a great deal about wine – including its history – seemingly by accident, so accessible is Heinricks’ approach to the topic.”
–Robert Reid, The Record (Kitchener)

“If this book were a wine, it would be something sparkling but robust, full of local flavour.… Through this impressionistic tale, even a wine or vine neophyte can easily imbibe all kinds of viticultural lore and information.…Heinricks writes with deft pacing, a sense of humour and an eye for telling details.”
–Andrew Vowles, Hamilton Spectator

“Absorbing reading both from the viticultural point of view and the historical. I started to read the book and was 40 pages into it in no time at all.… I consider this a super book, and you do not need to be a wine expert to read it."
–Malcolm Anderson, The Gazette (Montreal)

“[A] deft memoir of a life given over to the grape's dominatrix demands.”
–John Allemang, Report on Business magazine

“An absorbing glimpse into the intricacies and toils of creating a vineyard from scratch. Plus a vivid, living history of Ontario's Prince Edward County, the achingly pastoral peninsula that juts into Lake Ontario just west of Kingston.… Heinricks is studious, thoughtful and forthright, with the ability to write very well.… Often I recalled the long, richly detailed pastoral works of Thomas Hardy.”
–David Lawrason, Globe and Mail

"We've never met Geoff Heinricks, but he's a hero for turning his back on the bright lights and following his heart.… Heinricks' story of trying to create a world-class vineyard out on Lake Ontario, while keeping marriage, sanity and four kids together, is a lot of fun."
Toronto Star

“There are few books on growing grapes quite like A Fool and Forty Acres. Maybe Marq de Villiers’ The Heartbreak Grape comes close.… You really don’t have to know a floraison from a vendage to enjoy this book. It is a universal read filled with humour, intelligence, wonderfully drawn characters, and an extraordinary sense of place. And after you read it, lift a glass of superior Ontario wine in salute. It’s that good.”
–Andrew Armitage, The Sun Times (Owen Sound)


From the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

“An outstanding memoir.… Topping this book would be a difficult act.… How an intellectual threw his shoulder behind the plough and created a credible vineyard in the place of scrub brush is a lively and exciting tale.… Pain, loss and humiliation are strong themes in A Fool and Forty Acres, yet it is a terrifically engaging success story.– It’s the author’s knack for storytelling and his unbridled love of the challenge that make this a wonderful contribution to the growing literature of life on the land.”
–Marianne Ackerman, The Gazette (Montreal)

“This delightful book is not only a viticultural primer, but a personal memoir, local history and geographic study of a fascinating microclimate. Most of all, it’s a celebration of wine in all its myriad splendour.… The book is as informative as it is entertaining. A reader learns a great deal about wine – including its history – seemingly by accident, so accessible is Heinricks’ approach to the topic.”
–Robert Reid, The Record (Kitchener)

“If this book were a wine, it would be something sparkling but robust, full of local flavour.… Through this impressionistic tale, even a wine or vine neophyte can easily imbibe all kinds of viticultural lore and information.…Heinricks writes with deft pacing, a sense of humour and an eye for telling details.”
–Andrew Vowles, Hamilton Spectator

“Absorbing reading both from the viticultural point of view and the historical. I started to read the book and was 40 pages into it in no time at all.… I consider this a super book, and you do not need to be a wine expert to read it."
–Malcolm Anderson, The Gazette (Montreal)

“[A] deft memoir of a life given over to the grape's dominatrix demands.”
–John Allemang, Report on Business magazine

“An absorbing glimpse into the intricacies and toils of creating a vineyard from scratch. Plus a vivid, living history of Ontario's Prince Edward County, the achingly pastoral peninsula that juts into Lake Ontario just west of Kingston.… Heinricks is studious, thoughtful and forthright, with the ability to write very well.… Often I recalled the long, richly detailed pastoral works of Thomas Hardy.”
–David Lawrason, Globe and Mail

"We've never met Geoff Heinricks, but he's a hero for turning his back on the bright lights and following his heart.… Heinricks' story of trying to create a world-class vineyard out on Lake Ontario, while keeping marriage, sanity and four kids together, is a lot of fun."
Toronto Star

“There are few books on growing grapes quite like A Fool and Forty Acres. Maybe Marq de Villiers’ The Heartbreak Grape comes close.… You really don’t have to know a floraison from a vendage to enjoy this book. It is a universal read filled with humour, intelligence, wonderfully drawn characters, and an extraordinary sense of place. And after you read it, lift a glass of superior Ontario wine in salute. It’s that good.”
–Andrew Armitage, The Sun Times (Owen Sound)


From the Hardcover edition.

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Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not so foolish after all. Feb. 3 2011
Format:Paperback
This book was an absolute pleasure to read. Anyone who brings a dream into fruition (pun intended) deserves much praise. The writing style is humorous, and engaging. He makes the everyday sights of the County into something special and even magical, especially as he describes them through his young daughter's eyes. Each time Heinricks strays into too much information, he brings you back to a deep and profound appreciation of the richness and historicity of the County. As one who is seriously contemplating, and counting the cost of starting a vineyard in Prince Edward County,I found the information extremely useful.
An engaging read for lovers of vineyards, pioneering and Prince Edward County.
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0 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Tedious Nov. 6 2009
By AV
Format:Paperback
A dissapointing read. The author writes in a most boring and tedious style.
Rather than being an entertaining story the book is loaded with (irrelevant) history of the locality he lives in .... I couldn't bring myself to finish this book. A waste of money.
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